Entangled Existence

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Entangled Existence

A Kinship Plot collaborative learning cohort to enliven attention to the earth and our fellow creatures

By Kinship Plot

When and where

Date and time

January 22 · 3pm - May 14 · 5pm EST


Kinship Plot 2435 Rozzelles Ferry Road Charlotte, NC 28208

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About this event

Kinship Plot is a community of learning and practice imagining and embodying resonant relationships through study, contemplative action, artistry, land care, and life together.


This five-month learning cohort will incite reflection on our delightfully entangled life with the earth and fellow creatures through curated readings, guided reflections, rooted practices, and optional outings.

All around us creation is groaning. A growing awareness of our ecological and climate crisis and its impact on the global community is awakening many to the danger of denying a deep and fundamental wisdom: we are all connected.

Our lives and bodies are enmeshed with the earth and entangled with creatures of every kind. We’re vitally connected to the bacteria in our bodies, the trees on our block, the soil under our feet, countless other non-human characters, our fellow humans, and the divine. Attentiveness to these relationships is essential for our mutual flourishing, our survival, and our full joy. Awakening to these dynamics of entanglement and kinship allows for a fuller expression of our human identity, purpose, and spirituality.

What if we viewed entanglement not as a problem to be solved but a mystery to be encountered and embraced? How might this motivate us to live with wisdom and joy on this wounded earth? What would it look like for us to embrace our role within this earthly drama not as dominators but as tender kin? We believe these are questions that can fuel transformative practices of lament, repentance, discipleship, and hope. While we are approaching these questions within a Christian imaginary, you are wildly welcome in this cohort no matter your faith background.

Summary of themes

Month 1 (Jan 22): Formed for Entanglement / Re-reading the creation narrative and discovering the design for entanglement and kinship.

Month 2 (Feb 12): Deformation as Disentanglment / Grappling with how isolation from land, people, and other-than-human creatures lies at the heart of our woundedness.

Month 3 (Mar 12): Transformation through Interdependence / Investigating how reciprocity, mutuality, and communion transforms our perspectives and practices.

Month 4 (April 16): Imagining the Future of Kinship / Exploring how the future of kinship breaks into our present and impacts the way we live, relate, and connect.

Month 5 (May 14): Staying Entangled / Dialoguing about ways to stay with the beautiful trouble of entanglement and kinship in everyday life. (Note: In honor of American Mother's Day, we intend to include some reflections on earth as mother and how this impacts our habits of life. We love our human mother figures, but what happens when we expand our maternal imaginations?)

Cohort details

When: The cohort meets from 3-5pm EST one Sunday a month from January to May 2023, with virtual-live instruction and dialogue from 315-445pm EST. Local participants (Charlotte, NC) are encouraged to participate in person. All other participants can join via virtual-live format (Zoom), perhaps gathering with others in your area to enjoy in-person connection and a watch party. The schedule will unfold as follows:

3:00pm EST (8pm GMT) - Beginning of in-person gathering

3:15pm EST (815pm GMT) - Virtual- live session begins

4:45pm EST (945pm GMT) - Virtual-live session ends

5:00pm EST (1000pm GMT) - official end for in-person gathering

Meeting dates: Jan 22 / Feb 12 / March 12 / Apr 16 / May 14. Between meetings, we will stay connected through prompts, opportunities to process, field trip opportunities to supplement the learning, and suggestions for going deeper.

Where: We are tentatively planning to meet at Kinship Plot in West Charlotte, but our exact location (within 2 miles of uptown Charlotte) will be determined by the total number of participants. We will confirm the location by January 17.

Field Trips (free and optional):

Feb. 28 - Robin Kimmerer lecture @ Davidson College

Apr. 29 - Forest Walk led by Elizabeth Bridges

May 18 - Culture Bearer art show of QCFT featuring original artwork exploring the intersection between environmental justice, racial justice, and healing justice.

May 20 - Change Makers Rehearsal dinner of QCFT exploring practices that animate engagement with environmental justice, racial justice, and healing justice

Who is this for: Anyone! This cohort is not just for biologists, farmers, green thumbs and nature buffs (though, if that is you, wonderful!) but also for anyone who wants to learn about our vital connections with non-human creatures. We are facilitating this dialogue from within a Christian imaginary and a re-reading of the biblical text, but people from all traditions are warmly welcome to join. Every participant is a gift!

Is there a cost? We encourage registrants to contribute what is fitting to your financial situation, guided by our sliding scale (see below). Your contribution will cover facilitator time, materials, and the ability for others to participate who have less financial security. If you are currently experiencing low financial security, full scholarships are available that will enable you to participate at no cost! If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please fill out this form in lieu of registering and we will be in touch.

When should I register? Now! The last day to register is January 17, giving time to distribute and digest the first readings.

Who is facilitating the course? Wes and Stephanie Vander Lugt are the co-founders and creators of Kinship Plot. Wes is a pastor, theologian, writer, educator, nonprofit leader, and arts advocate with a passion for beauty, slowness, cultivation, kinship, and theodramatics. Stephanie is a minister and social-worker-in-training with a passion for the gift economy, healing, and peace-making through practices of embodied faith. Wes and Steph will be facilitating and guiding the cohort, but as a collaborative learning space, we acknowledge that the experts are the authors that we will read together and each of us who participates in this cohort. Learn more about Kinship Plot at www.kinshipplot.org.

How many readings are there and how much time will it require? Each month we plan to read selections from at least two different authors. We don't want to overburden you with reading, but reading a diverse spectrum of voices is important. For those who are hungry for more there will be plenty of additional suggested reading.

Will the sessions be recorded? We will record the sessions for the sake of participants who may have to miss a meeting. Recordings will only be available to those who are registered and will not be shared publicly. We do encourage participants to make as many meetings as possible.

Sliding scale

For those experiencing strong financial security: $200 on up

For those experiencing relative financial security: anywhere from $50 - $199

For those experiencing financial insecurity, no matter the reason or situation, please apply for a scholarship!

About the organizer

Organized by
Kinship Plot
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